Friday, 26 September 2014
ANGUS FRASER: GLEANINGS
Angus Fraser is not an easy man to contact, not even when you have his email address and mobile phone number. This much the Middlesex press officer told me: "You're best off coming through me", he said, after I'd mentioned making several attempts to nudge Gus from 'provisional agreement' to an interview to 'definite time and place'. "He's terrible with stuff like that".
Luckily, he's not terrible at giving up his time and offering his opinions on the game. Thus, as his Middlesex team played the Indians in a warm-up for the recent ODI series, we sat in a corporate box in the grandstand at Lord's and watched the action unfold. Over the course of 1 hour and 40 minutes – much longer than he'd anticipated, although not once did he give off an air of impatience or irritation, not even when fielding a call from Mike Atherton an hour or so in – we went back over his career, and even found time to do an interview-within-an-interview, chatting about his transition from player to journalist [forthcoming on cricinfo].
Here's the chat: "I spent 95% of my career bowling the same ball"
Oh, and after it had been published, he emailed back. "Very good. Enjoyed it". He can switch his computer on, pretty essential for a former journalist, I'd guess.
Post-script: The interview, rather touchingly, was selected by The Guardian for their 'Our Favourite Things this Week', the third piece of mine to have been so chosen, after a stupid post about the top 10 goalies in world football having names beginning with Z (only chosen because of a brilliant caricature I had commissioned) and the story of Imran Tahir's 2008 heroics for Moddershall, published by Wisden India under the title, 'The Where Pitch Project'.